Despite what marketers predicted, email isn’t dead yet.
Email is still one of the most effective ways to reach your audiences directly and often has a higher return rate than other forms of marketing. It’s an essential part of the mix and it’s proven to have a positive impact on all of your marketing campaigns.
However, when speaking with clients the biggest fall down is often capturing data for their email campaigns. So, I’ve pulled together 18 legit ways to gather data for your email campaigns below:
- Check your business cards – this is one that people forget to do, you’ve exchanged business cards and its now sitting in a draw or on your desk. Dig them out and add them to your email database.
- Export your Linkedin contacts – you’ve probably spent the last 10 years networking and connecting with people on Linkedin, only to never talk to them again. Export your Linkedin contacts and watch your email list grow overnight.
- Export your address book from Outlook – same as above, your Outlook address book will have all of the contact details for the people that you’ve recently talked to. There is bound to be some duplication but most email marketing software de-duplicates on import, so no need to worry.
- Run a competition – consider running a giveaway or online competition. Competitions are an engaging way to build up your email list. Just make sure your terms and conditions state what you’ll be using the data for.
- Collect data from surveys – surveys are also a great way to gather intelligence, not just email data. Offer an incentive or a giveaway (as above) to generate extra interest.
- Capture data directly with Twitter Ads (lead generation card) – A while back Twitter introduced lead generation cards. Lead generation cards form part of your promoted tweet and they allow you to capture directly from the tweet itself. This avoids the need to bounce people to a landing page, which risks losing them at the final hurdle.
- Ask social media followers to sign up to your newsletter – you may have hundreds, if not thousands of followers on social media, but I bet you’ve never asked them to sign up to your newsletter? There is no harm in asking, it’s an easy way to grow your database.
- Check your existing customer database – some businesses will have multiple spreadsheets and CRMs, which only adds to the confusion. Using email marketing software can be a great way to bring all of these lists together in one place. Don’t forget to segment when you import!
- Past customers and contacts – just because they’re no longer your customer, there is no harm in sending them a follow up email, especially if you’re looking for feedback on your services or reasons why they left. Be sure to include an opt out!
- Check your prospects list – this may seem like a fairly obvious one, but check with your team to see if they have been speaking to anyone new that may want to opt in to receive your newsletter. People often work in silos and will have their own list of contacts outside of your organisation’s CRM. Ask, ask, ask, there is no harm.
- Create your own event and generate sign ups – offer a free workshop or seminar to clients and promote places on your social networks. Offering something free in return for registering their details is a great way to build up contacts. Businesses do this all the time, but make sure you capture the data, and make it clear in your T&Cs what you’ll be using the data for.
- Add a newsletter sign up form via your website – this is one that seems so obvious, but how many of you have a form on your website for newsletter sign ups? Add one if you haven’t already.
- Add a check box on contact forms for people to subscribe – as above, add a tick box to your existing capture forms to allow people to opt in to future email updates.
- Promote via your email signature – you probably have your social media links in there, so why not add the option for people to subscribe to newsletters directly from your email. They clearly have an email address.
- Use a campaign landing page – landing pages can be a great way to capture data. It can be as simple as offering an eBook or to receive exclusive tips via email. You can even create email follow-up sequences (we’ll cover this again).
- Talk to people – when speaking with people on the phone or in person, just ask if they want to receive your newsletter. It’s as simple as that.
- Newsletter only discounts – people won’t just sign up to your newsletter without a reason. Give them a reason, offer discounts or exclusive content for signing up.
Only use data that you’ve collected yourself and where the individual or organisation has opted in to receive updates from you. Always include an unsubscribe link across your distribution channels (online and offline).